Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)
Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) is a response to a traumatic event or series of events. Something that is traumatic for one person might not be traumatic for another, but what matters is how that experience stays with the person. It can include flashbacks to the traumatic event, uncontrollable movements and thoughts, anxiety and hypervigilance, physical and emotional triggers, among other symptoms.
PTSD is most commonly found amongst survivors of sexual violence, as well as war veterans, survivors of abuse or natural disasters, and witnesses to violence. Not all traumatic experiences lead to PTSD and there are many factors that affect the severity, such as the number of other traumatic experiences in a person’s life, their reaction to the event, and the kind of support they received after.
It is extremely important to take your feelings seriously and learn to treat and manage symptoms. There are a lot of approaches to working with PTSD, including psychotherapy (an approached specifically designed to work with trauma is EMDR – Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing), medication, sharing in community, support groups, somatic interventions around triggers, and spiritual and indigenous approaches to healing.